Who doesn’t love this line from The Godfather? Classic. Who doesn’t love a good cannoli? Hmm, I’m not 100% on that one. Yet.
As I typed the title to this entry, one thought swam through my brain. How many others are going to use the above title or ‘Holy Cannoli’? OK, that’s not really relevant here; what’s relevant is, I am the host of this month’s Daring Bakers Challenge! (insert dancing bear).
When Lis asked me last April if I wanted to host, it took me about half a nano-second to shriek “Hell Yeah!” I had so many ideas and so many visions of super daring, albeit amazing, cakes, cookies, breads, etc. SO, what did I end up choosing? Something not baked, although it can be.
I was excited, thinking “WOW, this is perfect, how many people have actually made cannoli from scratch, shells and all?”
Yep, this could be the epitome of the word daring, especially for those who were not interested in making cannoli from scratch, but did so anyway, and are now cannoli pros, not to mention connoisseurs. Some who participated never liked cannoli, but are now card-holding cannoli converts. I love that this challenge broadened the cannoli landscape for some!
Commercial cannoli forms (tubes) in various sizes
The night before I posted my challenge at the Daring Kitchen, I suddenly had doubts..
This isn’t baking. Plus, a lot of people detest deep-frying anything.
Shoot, some have never even heard of cannoli!
Well, after all the research and testing I did with different recipes, and time spent carefully writing out every detail of this challenge, I knew I had no choice since there was not enough time to bake something new and write out another detailed challenge post. Naturally, there was a lot of trepidation by many at first because cannoli isn’t one of those desserts that most flip over, and as mentioned above, many hate, hate, hate deep-frying.
Now I’m glad I chose cannoli as the Novemeber Daring Bakers challenge because what I’ve seen from these Daring Bakers, diving in head first..even finding ways to make cannoli forms (traditional and unique) if they didn’t want to purchase or couldn’t find them, has completely blown me away.
I am so proud to be part of a group loaded with such talented and creative people!
Growing up, one of my fondest memories was going to Chinatown with my parents and their friends and kids about once a month, usually to one of the hidden Hunan Houses, which were simple, unadorned doors down a few steps off the street that not many knew about. We would gorge for hours, ordering course after course after course; some of the best Chinese food I had ever had.
For dessert, it was always over to Little Italy, a short walk away. Cannoli was at the top of our dessert list, and when creating this challenge, I was trying to get as close to some of that cannoli as I could, especially the ones from Ferrara’s. This is why I ended up with a combo of two recipes, with a few personal tweaks.
Let’s just say, for two weeks, all I did was fry cannoli shells.
Blistering makes for a light and crispy shell. The telltale sign of a good cannoli.
Before I continue, lookie lookie! I have my own blog checking lines for the big brother bot! The thing is, do I need to post one since this is MY challenge? Should I change ‘Lisa’ to ‘ME’, and Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives to ‘HERE’ or third person speak (which I hate)? I suppose I’ll just post it as if it was someone’s else’s challenge, since I don’t need the bot skipping over this post due to the words not being exactly as written.
The November 2009 Daring Bakers Challenge was chosen and hosted by Lisa of Parsley, Sage, Desserts and Line Drives. She chose the Italian Pastry, Cannolo (Cannoli is plural), using the cookbooks Lidia’s Italian-American Kitchen by Lidia Matticchio Bastianich and The Sopranos Family Cookbook by Allen Rucker; recipes by Michelle Scicolone, as ingredient/direction guides. She added her own modifications/changes, so the recipe is not 100% verbatim from either book.
Guess what? If you click the link, you end up HERE, over and over! I won’t let you leave my humble abode!
Pumpkin cheese filled cannoli dipped in caramel and pecans, and wrapped with spun sugar; the shell dough rolled around the form using square, rather than circular or oval, cut-outs.
All kidding aside, as mentioned above, I was astounded by all the Macguyvers in this challenge. Since traditonal cannoli forms are not something most have lying around their kitchen, they would have to purchase them or make their own cannoli forms. It was amazing what some came up with, from the super traditional Sicilian forms, which is sawing a broomstick, dowel or cane into 6 to 8 inch lengths, then sanding them down and oiling them!
Would you believe a bunch of Daring Bakers actually did this?
Now if that isn’t the true spirit of a Daring Baker, I don’t what is. Other forms used were oiled cannelloni or manicotti pasta tubes, aluminum foil pans cut and rolled, wooden spoons, butter knives, a tinfoil contraption by an engineer (John), tomato paste cans, a frozen ball of butter for cannoli bowls, copper pipes, a sawed up wooden hanger, the handle of a swimming pool skimmer, a can opener..AND the list goes on! Are the Daring Bakers not some of the most creative and crafty people around? Stacked cannoli aka Cannolipoleons, with mini chocolate chip – orange mascarpone filling and raspberries.
On that note, I also gave the DB’ers a choice of simply cutting out shapes similar to a rolled cookie dough, frying them, and stacking them like Napoleons aka Cannolipoleons, with the filling of their choice. What amazed me was, most chose to make the traditional tube shaped cannoli, whether or not they had metal cannoli tubes, hence all the creative materials used. Some even managed to make cannoli bowls and ice cream cones! I’ll say it again – I’m truly in awe of my fellow Daring Bakers.
When choosing this challenge, I had to take into consideration that the month of November was going to be a tough time for many Daring Bakers in the USA due to Thanksgiving preparation. This is another reason why I chose cannoli over some more challenging ideas..such as a layered dacqouise and sponge cake with a deep caramelized sugar-coffee (or any flavor one wanted to use) syrup, called a Cardinal Slice, or another amazing Italian pastry called Sfogiatelle (Isn’t it beautiful? But, it’s very, very involved),
Since many would be focusing on their Thanksgiving meals, daring, but not too involved, was what I aimed for. I offered up a pumpkin cheese cannoli filling recipe for those who wanted to add cannoli to their Thanksgiving dessert table, although any cannoli and filling would make a wonderful Thanksgiving dessert or even savory addition to the meal. Some took that savory route..from bacon and egg, to Mexican, to even turkey and vegemite! You really must check out the Daring Bakers Blogroll for this challenge, because cannoli has been taken to so many different shapes, fillings and levels, it’s utterly mind-blowing
I gave the traditional ricotta filling a whir in the food processor, which resulted in an uber creamy filling..not conducive to a pretty piping, but silky smooth on the palate.
For those of you out there who are not members of the Daring Bakers, I’m going to post the challenge as I did at the Daring Kitchen, verbatim. Who knows, you just may want to take a daring stab at these rich, lovely Italian pastries. Enjoy!
Sorry all, we’re not baking this month (this line fooled some, which was the initial intention, I just hope nobody avoided opening the entry to read the rest! lol), so put away your baking pans and get out the deep fry thermometer and oil!
Hi everyone, thanks for baking, err, deep frying with me this month! We’re making Cannoli! This is/was my first time making cannoli from scratch, but it’s well worth it, and a great new experience/dessert to add to your culinary repertoire. I hope you all enjoy this challenge, and I’m looking forward to seeing everyone’s take on this sweet (or savory, if desired) Italian favorite.
Cannoli are known as Italian-American pastries, although the origin of cannoli dates back to Sicily, specifically Palermo, where it was prepared during Carnevale season, and according to lore, as a symbol of fertility. The cannoli is a fried, tube-shaped pastry shell (usually containing wine) filled with a creamy amalgamation of sweetened ricotta cheese, chocolate, candied fruit or zest, and sometimes nuts.
Although not traditional, mascarpone cheese is also widely used, and in fact, makes for an even creamier filling when substituted for part of the ricotta, or by itself. However, cannoli can also be filled with pastry creams, mousses, whipped cream, ice cream etc. You could also add your choice of herbs, zests or spices to the dough, if desired. Marsala is the traditional wine used in cannoli dough, but any red or white wine will work fine since it’s not only added for flavor or color, but to relax the gluten in the dough since it can be a very stiff dough to work with. By the way, the name ‘Lidisano’ is a combination of Lidia, Lisa and Sopranos, even though my contribution was far less than the other two.
How to Make Cannoli from Scratch
Posting Date – November 27, 2009
Cannoli forms/tubes – optional, but recommended if making traditional shaped cannoli. Dried cannelloni pasta tubes work just as well!
Deep, heavy saucepan, enough to hold at least 2-3-inches of oil or deep fryer
Deep fat frying thermometer. although the bread cube or bit of dough test will work fine.
Brass or wire skimmer OR large slotted spoon
Pastry bag with large star or plain tip, but a snipped ziplock bag, butter knife or teaspoon will work fine.
Paper bags or paper towels
Sieve or fine wire mesh strainer
Electric Mixer, stand or hand, optional, as mixing the filling with a spoon is fine.
Food Processor or Stand Mixer – also optional, since you can make the dough by hand, although it takes more time.
Rolling pin and/or Pasta roller/machine
Pastry or cutting board
Round cutters – The dough can also be cut into squares and rolled around the cannoli tube prior to frying. If making a stacked cannoli, any shaped cutter is fine, as well as a sharp knife.
Mixing bowl and wooden spoon if mixing filling by hand
Tea towels or just cloth towels
Required: Must make cannoli dough and shells. If you don’t have or do not want to purchase cannoli forms, which I would never ask of any of you, you could simply cut out circles, squares, or any shapes you want and stack them with the filling of your choice to make stacked cannoli aka Cannolipoleons (directions below). If desired, you can channel MacGuyver and fashion something heat proof to get traditional shaped cannoli (6-8 inch sawed off lengths of a wooden broom stick or cane, sanded down and oiled, is THE authentic cannoli form!), or non-traditional shapes such as creating a foil form to make bowls, or even using cream horns if you happen to have them. Mini cannoli would be great too, and I’ve provided links to retailers of cannoli forms of all sizes.
Also, for those who don’t like to cook or bake with alcohol – grape juice, cranberry juice, pomegranate juice, apple juice; any sweet juice of a fruit except citrus, especially ones used in or to make wine, can be substituted. Just add a little more vinegar to insure you get enough acid to relax the dough.
Variations: The filling is YOUR choice! Anything you want to fill them with is perfectly fine, sweet or savory, or you can use the filling recipe provided – making whatever changes you want to it. cannoli would make a great addition to a Thanksgiving dessert table/spread. In many Italian households, during the holidays, cannoli is always part of the dessert offerings. You could also make a Thanksgiving themed cannoli, like pumpkin cannoli (I came up with a great pumpkin cheese filling recipe, below) or apples, pecans, walnuts, and/or any dried fruits you like.
Some ideas to gussy up your cannoli would be dipping the rims of the shell in melted chocolate and rolling them in chopped nuts or sprinkles, then letting them set prior to filling, or dipping or pressing mini chocolate chips into the filled ends OR just stirring mini chocolate chips into the filling prior to stacking or filling whatever shaped shells you come up with. All of the above makes a great presentation! The sky is the limit here, so be creative! Naturally, if you have any dietary restrictions, by all means, go with it. I’ve provided a link to a gluten-free cannoli recipe and a slightly savory vegan cannoli recipe to help get you started.
Bonus option: Make your own ricotta and/or mascarpone cheese! http://parsleysagesweet.com/2009/05/04/eating-my-curds-and-ditching…
Technically, I know, this is not baking, and if you prefer to steer clear of the deep fry, you can bake the shells. You won’t get the snappy, blistery texture and appearance that make cannoli so special, but I’m sure it’ll taste good nonetheless. Here’s a link for baked cannoli shells: http://italiannotes.com/oven-baked-cannoli-with-dried-fruit/
Makes approximately 22-24 4-inch cannoli
Dough – 2 hours and 10-20 minutes, including resting time, and depending on whether you do it by hand or machine.
Filling – 5-10 minutes plus chilling time (about 2 hours or more)
Frying – 1-2 minutes per cannoli
Assemble – 20–30 minutes
UPDATE: I learned that the addition of a little freshly ground or instant coffee to the shell dough is traditional in Sicilian style cannoli and gives the shells more flavor. I suppose you can add it along with the cocoa or in lieu of it. ALSO, and of utmost importance, the dough must be paper thin when rolled around the cannoli form, and the oil the right temperature, in order to get that snap, crackle, pop bubbled shell that breaks into light and lovely shards with each bite. To get the dough paper thin, I’d recommend running it through a pasta machine a few times, dialing down with each roll.
UPDATE April, 2015 – Joanne left a comment saying she took a cooking class in Catania, Sicily and the chef was adamant about using Ever Clear 95% alcohol in lieu of the vinegar (1 teaspoon) and lard instead of oil (3 tablespoons). Apparently, the dough is easier to roll, and both of those changes give you really puffy and bubbly cannoli shells. More than worth a try!
UPDATE May, 2015 – After trying the most amazing, crispy, bubbly cannoli shells at an Italian Bakery on Staten Island, I was told the dough should not be too thin in order to get big bubbles and crispy, shattery shells. I guess another test is in order
2 cups (250 grams/8.82 ounces) all-purpose flour
2 tablespoons(28 grams/1 ounce) sugar
1 teaspoon (5 grams/0.06 ounces) unsweetened baking cocoa powder
1/2 teaspoon (1.15 grams/0.04 ounces) ground cinnamon
1/2 teaspoon (approx. 3 grams/0.11 ounces) salt
3 tablespoons (42 grams/1.5 ounces) vegetable shortening or lard or vegetable oil
1 teaspoon (5 grams/0.18 ounces) white wine vinegar or Ever Clear 95% alcohol
Approximately 1/2 cup (approx. 59 grams/approx. 4 fluid ounces/approx. 125 ml) sweet Marsala or any white or red wine you have on hand
1 large egg, separated (you will need the egg white, but not the yolk, although you can switch and use the yolk instead of the white for easier rolling, I’ve heard.)
Vegetable or any neutral oil for frying – about 2 quarts (8 cups/approx. 2 litres)
1/2 cup (approx. 62 grams/2 ounces) toasted, chopped pistachio nuts, mini chocolate chips/grated chocolate and/or candied or plain zests, fruits etc.. for garnish
Note – If you want a chocolate cannoli dough, substitute a few tablespoons of the flour (about 25%) with a few tablespoons of dark, unsweetened cocoa powder (Dutch process) and a little more wine until you have a workable dough (Thanks to Audax).
2 lbs (approx. 3.5 cups/approx. 1 kg/32 ounces) ricotta cheese
1 2/3 cups cup (160 grams/6 ounces) confectioner’s sugar, (more or less, depending on how sweet you want it), sifted
1/2 teaspoon (1.15 grams/0.04 ounces) ground cinnamon
1 teaspoon (4 grams/0.15 ounces) pure vanilla extract or the beans from one vanilla bean
3 tablespoons (approx. 28 grams/approx. 1 ounce) finely chopped good quality chocolate of your choice
2 tablespoons (12 grams/0.42 ounces) of finely chopped, candied orange peel, or the grated zest of one small to medium orange
3 tablespoons (23 grams/0.81 ounce) toasted, finely chopped pistachios
Note – If you want chocolate ricotta filling, add a few tablespoons of dark, unsweetened cocoa powder to the above recipe, and thin it out with a few drops of warm water if too thick to pipe.
DIRECTIONS FOR SHELLS:
1. In the bowl of an electric stand mixer or food processor, combine the flour, sugar, cocoa, cinnamon, and salt. Stir in the oil (If using shortening or lard, cut it in with your fingers like you would a pie dough, then add the vinegar and wine), vinegar, egg yolk or egg white (whichever part of the egg you don’t add to the dough, will be used to seal the cannoli dough around the cannoli forms) and enough of the wine to make a soft dough. Turn the dough out onto a lightly floured surface and knead until smooth and well blended, about 2 minutes. Shape the dough into a ball. Cover with plastic wrap and let rest in the fridge from 2 hours to overnight.
2 Cut the dough into two pieces. Keep the remaining dough covered while you work. Lightly flour a large cutting or pastry board and roll the dough until super thin, about 1/16″ to 1/8” thick (An area of about 13 inches by 18 inches should give you that, or use a pasta roller for a quicker route to paper thin dough). Cut out 3-inch to 5-inch circles (3-inch – small shells; 4-inch – medium shells; 5-inch;- large shells. Your choice). Roll the cut out circle into an oval, rolling it larger and thinner if it’s shrunk a little.
3 Oil the outside of the cannoli tubes (You only have to do this once, as the oil from the deep fry will keep them well, uhh, oiled..lol). Roll a dough oval from the long side (If square, position like a diamond, and place tube/form on the corner closest to you, then roll) around each tube/form and dab a little egg yolk or egg white (whichever part of the egg you didn’t use in the dough, as mentioned above) on the dough where the edges overlap. (Avoid getting egg yolk or egg white on the tube, or the pastry will stick to it.) Press well to seal. Set aside to let the egg yolk or egg white dry a little for a good seasl.
4. In a deep heavy saucepan, pour enough oil to reach a depth of 3 inches, or if using an electric deep-fryer, follow the manufacturer’s directions. Heat the oil to 375°F (190 °C) on a deep fry thermometer, or until a small piece of the dough or bread cube placed in the oil sizzles and browns in 1 minute. Have ready a tray or sheet pan lined with paper towels or paper bags.
5. Carefully lower a few of the cannoli tubes into the hot oil. Do not crowd the pan. Fry the shells until golden, about 2 minutes, turning them so that they brown evenly.
8. Lift a cannoli tube with a wire skimmer or large slotted spoon, out of the oil. Using tongs, grasp the cannoli tube at one end. Very carefully remove the cannoli tube with the open sides straight up and down so that the oil flows back into the pan. Place the tube on paper towels or bags to drain. Repeat with the remaining tubes. While they are still hot, grasp the tubes with a potholder and pull the cannoli shells off the tubes with a pair of tongs, or with your hand protected by an oven mitt or towel. Let the shells cool completely on the paper towels. Place shells on cooling rack until ready to fill.
9. Repeat making and frying the shells with the remaining dough. If you are reusing the cannoli tubes, let them cool before wrapping them in the dough.
Pasta Machine method:
1. Divide the dough into 4 equal pieces. Starting at the middle setting, run one of the pieces of dough through the rollers of a pasta machine. Lightly dust the dough with flour as needed to keep it from sticking. Pass the dough through the machine repeatedly, until you reach the highest or second highest setting. The dough should be about 4 inches wide and thin enough to see your hand through
2. Continue rolling out the remaining dough. If you do not have enough cannoli tubes for all of the dough, lay the pieces of dough on sheets of plastic wrap and keep them covered until you are ready to use them.
3, Roll, cut out and fry the cannoli shells according to the directions above.
For Stacked Cannoli (Cannolipoleons):
1. Heat 2-inches of oil in a saucepan or deep sauté pan, to 350-375°F (176 – 190 °C).
2. Cut out desired shapes with cutters or a sharp knife. Deep fry until golden brown and blistered on each side, about 1 – 2 minutes. Remove from oil with wire skimmer or large slotted spoon, then place on paper towels or bags until dry and grease free. If they balloon up in the hot oil, dock them lightly prior to frying. Place on cooling rack until ready to stack with filling.
DIRECTIONS FOR FILLING:
1. Line a strainer with cheesecloth. Place the ricotta in the strainer over a bowl, and cover with plastic wrap and a towel. Weight it down with a heavy can, and let the ricotta drain in the refrigerator for several hours to overnight.
2. In a bowl with electric mixer, beat ricotta until smooth and creamy. Beat in confectioner’s sugar, cinnamon, vanilla and blend until smooth. Transfer to another bowl and stir in chocolate, zest and nuts. Chill until firm.(The filling can be made up to 24 hours prior to filling the shells. Just cover and keep refrigerated).
ASSEMBLE THE CANNOLI:
1. When ready to serve..fill a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain or star tip, or a ziplock bag, with the ricotta cream. If using a ziplock bag, cut about 1/2 inch off one corner. Insert the tip in the cannoli shell and squeeze gently until the shell is half filled. Turn the shell and fill the other side. You can also use a teaspoon to do this, although it’s messier and will take longer.
2. Press or dip cannoli in chopped pistachios, grated chocolate/mini chocolate chips, candied fruit or zest into the cream at each end. Dust with confectioner’s sugar and/or drizzles of melted chocolate if desired.
PUMPKIN CHEESE FILLING
1/2 cup (123 grams/4.34 ounces) ricotta cheese
1/2 cup (113 grams/4.04 ounces) mascarpone cheese or cream cheese
1/2 cup (122.5 grams/4.32 ounces) canned pumpkin (not pumpkin pie filling)
1 cup (77 grams/2.70 ounces) confectioner’s sugar, sifted
**1/2 to 1 teaspoon (approx. 1.7 grams/approx. 0.06 ounces) pumpkin pie spice (taste)
1/2 teaspoon (approx. 2 grams/approx. 0.08 ounces) pure vanilla extract
6-8 cannoli shells
1. In a bowl with electric mixer, beat ricotta and mascarpone until smooth and creamy. Beat in confectioner’s sugar, pumpkin, pumpkin pie spice, vanilla and blend until smooth. Transfer to another bowl, cover and chill until it firms up a bit. (The filling can be made up to 24 hours prior to filling the shells. Just cover and keep refrigerated).**
2. Fill the shells as directed above. I dipped the ends of the shells in caramelized sugar and rolled them in toasted, chopped pecans.
** For a smoother filling, place all ingredients in the food processor and run on high until creamy and uniform.
** If you don’t have or can’t find pumpkin pie spice..make your own. Double recipe to fill a standard spice jar.
2 tablespoons ground cinnamon
1 tablespoon ground ginger
1 and 1/2 teaspoons nutmeg
1 and 1/4 teaspoons ground cloves
Mix all of the above together and store tightly covered in a cool, dry place
TIPS AND NOTES:
– Dough must be stiff and well-kneaded
– Rolling the dough to paper thinness, using either a rolling pin or pasta machine, is very important. If the dough is not rolled thin enough, it will not blister, and good cannoli should have a blistered surface.
– Initially, this dough is VERY stubborn, but keep rolling, covering, resting, rolling, covering, resting.. repeat, it eventually gives in. Before cutting the shapes, let the dough rest a bit, covered, as it tends to spring back into a smaller shapes once cut. Then again, you can also roll circles larger after they’re cut, and/or into ovals, which gives you more space for filling.
– Your basic set of round cutters usually doesn’t contain a 5-inch cutter. Try a plastic container top, bowl etc, or just roll each circle to 5 inches. There will always be something in your kitchen that’s round and 5-inches if you want large cannoli.
– Oil should be at least 3 inches deep and hot – 360°F-375°F, or you’ll end up with greasy shells. I prefer 350°F – 360°F because I felt the shells darkened too quickly at 375°F.
– If using the cannoli forms, when you drop the dough on the form into the oil, they tend to sink to the bottom, resulting in one side darkening more. Use a slotted spoon or skimmer to gently lift and roll them while frying.
– DO NOT crowd the pan. Cannoli should be fried 2-4 at a time, depending on the width of your saucepan or deep fryer. Turn them once and lift them out gently with a slotted spoon/wire skimmer and tongs. Just use a wire strainer or slotted spoon for flat cannoli shapes.
– When the cannoli turns light brown – uniform in color, watch it closely or remove it. If it’s already a deep brown when you remove it, you might end up with a really dark or slightly burnt shell, which happened to a few of mine.
– Depending on how much scrap you have left after cutting out all of your cannoli shapes, you can either fry them up and sprinkle with confectioner’s sugar for a crispy treat, or let the scraps rest under plastic wrap and a towel, then re-roll and cut more cannoli shapes.
– Push forms out of cannoli very gently, being careful not to break the shells as they are very delicate. DO NOT let the cannoli cool on the form, as you may never get it off without it breaking. Try to take it off while still hot. Hold it with a cloth in the center, and push the form out with a butter knife or the back of a spoon.
– When adding the confectioner’s sugar to the filling..TASTE. You may like it sweeter than what the recipe calls for, or less sweet, so add in increments.
– Fill cannoli right before serving! If you fill them a half hour or so prior, you’ll end up with soggy cannoli shells.
– If you want to prepare the shells ahead of time, store them in an airtight container, then (if needed) re-crisp in a 350°F (176 °C) oven for a few minutes, before filling.
– Practice makes perfect. My first batch of shells came out less than spectacular, and that’s an understatement. As you go along, you’ll see what will make them more aesthetically pleasing, and adjust accordingly when rolling. My next several batches turned out great. Don’t give up!!
Gluten free cannoli recipe that looks great –
Vegan cannoli –
http://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=cannoli&search_type=&aq=f – scroll through, loads of videos on the making of the shells. filling, etc. Mario Batali’s are particularly good.
http://www.flickr.com/search/?w=all&q=cannoli&m=text – Loads of beautiful and unique cannoli photos along with the traditional. Great way to get some ideas for fillings and décor.
Online retailers for cannoli forms
https://www.pastrychef.com/CANNOLI-TUBES_p_36-1202.html – If you want to buy a lot of them for one set price.
Before I end this entry, remember where I said you can fill your cannoli shell with anything you want? Well, Zorra from 1x umrühren bitte created a delicious wood filled cannoli that’ll knock your socks..err..teeth out!
The truth is, she used fig branches for cannoli forms, and couldn’t remove them after frying those beautiful shells. She hates cannoli, but went above and beyond to take part in this challenge. I absolutely LOVE this photo. and with her permission, had to post it. I just want to hug her after reading her entry. Go check it out, but again, those are some beautifully blistered shells so it’s too bad the fig branches didn’t want to budge! Boycott Fig Newtons!
Also, one other favorite photo that doesn’t need any explaining. This brought a huge smile to my face! If this doesn’t scream “I did it!”, I don’t know what does! Thank you Jenny from Purple House Dirt for letting me share your enthusiasm! Beautiful shells!
In the category of “Cannoli, Incognito” are Rita of Clumbsy Cookie who turned cannoli into fettuccine, ravioli and tortilla chips! You have to go check out the rest of her photos! She’s one creative lady!
Simon of the heart of food blew me away with his lemon-mascarpone filled cannoli ‘eggs’ in a toffee nest. He cut out very small circles of the dough, didn’t dock them so they would puff up in the oil, (reminding me of pommes de terre souflees), then carefully used a teeny weeny tip to poke a hole and inject them with the cream. I’m awed, seriously.
Finally, the ‘Best Blisters’ award goes to Marcellina from Marcellina in Cucina. WOW, what amazing shells!
Thanks to all who participated in this challenge with me and a huge thanks to Lis and Ivonne for the hosting gig and their encouragement and patience. Also, again to Ivonne for doing the metric conversions for me, since I’m metrically stunted and my scale sucks.